Videology: Art & Cybernetics

Videology: Art & Cybernetics

Louis Armand, Ph.D.

Monday, 12 November, 2018 - 10:00 to 15:40
Tuesday, 13 November, 2018 - 10:00 to 15:40

Dům umění města Brna
Malinovského nám. 2

Louis Armand, Ph.D. Writer, visual artist and critical theorist born in Sidney, Australia. He is director of the Centre for Critical and Cultural Theory at Charles University in Prague.

Videology: Art & Cybernetics

This seminar focuses on the transformation of the relationship between art, technology and futurity through the reshaping of human consciousness in the post-industrial age. From the advent of the industrial revolution to the birth of cybernetics, artificial intelligence & quantum computing, what poet William Blake called the “human abstract” has undergone a radical evolution – & this has been reflected in a transformation both of the idea of art & its forms, from machine aesthetics to cyberculture to xenofeminism & beyond. If modernity has come to be characterized by the “end of history” (Auschwitz, the Cold War, the Anthropocene, the Technological Singularity) in which humanity “experiences” its own negation, as Walter Benjamin suggested, as an aesthetic experience of the highest order, how is this mediated through the intersection of art & cybernetics? If technology, in its broadest ramification, represents both the necessity and impossibility of a “living on” – from individual, to species, to general ecology – beyond what Buckminster Fuller famously evoked as the mission of “Spaceship Earth,” is the task of art to represent the possibility of a post-future of the post-human? The seminar will address the work of artists from Marcel Duchamp, John Cage & Nam June Paik, to Stelarc, VNS Matrix, Nina Sellars, Merz, Mark Amerika, Laboria Cuboniks & Christian Bök – among others.

Louis Armand, Ph.D is director of the Centre for Critical and Cultural Theory. His books include Videology (2015), The Organ-Grinder’s Monkey (2013), Event States: Discourse, Time, Mediality (2007), Literate Technologies: Language, Cognition, Technicity (2006), Incendiary Devices: Discourses of the Other (2006), Solicitations: Essays on Criticism and Culture (2005), and Technē: James Joyce, Hypertext and Technology (2003). Edited collections include Pornoterrorism: De-aesetheticising Power (with Jaromir Lelek, 2015), Abolishing Prague (2014), The Return of Kral Majales: Prague’s International Literary Renaissance 1990-2010 (2010), Contemporary Poetics (Northwestern University Press, 2007), Pornotopias (with Jane Lewty & Andrew Mitchell), Technicity (with Arthur Bradley, 2007), Avant-Post: The Avant-garde under “Post-” Conditions (2006), Mind Factory (2006), JoyceMedia (2004), Giacomo Joyce: Envoys of the Other (with Clare Wallace, 2002; expanded edition 2006) and Petr Škrabánek, A Night Joyce of a Thousand Tiers (with Ondřej Pilný, 2002). In 1994 he co-founded the online journal Hypermedia Joyce Studies, which he edited up until 2006. In 2008 he founded the Prague Microfestival. He has published twelve volumes of poetry, including East Broadway Rundown (2015), Indirect Objects (2014), Synopticon (with John Kinsella, 2012), Letters from Ausland (2011), Malice in Underland (2004), Strange Attractors (2003), Land Partition (2001) and Inexorable Weather (2001), as well as eight novels, including The Garden (2001), Menudo (2006), Breakfast at Midnight (shortlisted for 3AM magazine’s Novel of the Year, 2012), Cairo (shortlisted for the Guardian newspaper’s Not-the-Booker Prize, 2014) and The Combinations (2016). He is the editor of VLAK magazine, founding editor of Litteraria Pragensia Book and a member of the editorial boards of Rhizomes: Cultural Studies in Emerging Knowledge (Washington State University). His work has been included in The Penguin Anthology of Australian Poetry, Best Australian Poems, Poems for the Millennium (vol. 4), Contemporary Australian Poetry, World Poetry in English, Thirty Australian Poets, among others. His critical essays have appeared in Angeliki, Technoculture, Sci Phi, Symplokē, James Joyce Quarterly, The Symptom, Journal for Cultural Research, James Joyce Literary Supplement, Lola, Jacket 2, Cordite, Semiotica, Irish Studies Review, Genetic Joyce Studies, Culture Machine and TriQuarterly. He is a member of the Northern Theory School, University of Lancaster, UK; an associate member of the Centre for Postcolonial Writing, Monash University, Australia; he was a member of the European Network project ACUME2: Interfacing the Arts, Sciences and Humanities; and from 2008-2012 served as a trustee of the International James Joyce Foundation. He has also taught Art History at the University of New York, Prague.